Luke Brennan (solo show)

Weather permitting, Late Autumn-Early WInter
Sat. & Sun., 11am-4pm
-35.31847784452275, 149.00979810077274 (See map)
Yale-Columbia Telescope, Mount Stromlo, Canberra/Kamberri

Enquiries, PDF


“... When the waters retreated, a deep layer of warm mud covered the earth. Now, this mud, which harbored in its decay all the enzymes from what had perished in the flood, was extraordinarily fertile: as soon as it was touched by the sun, it was covered with shoots from which grasses and plants of every type sprang forth; and, further, its soft, moist bosom was host to the marriages of all the species saved in the ark. It was a time, never to be repeated, of wild, ecstatic fecundity, in which the entire universe felt love, so intensely that it nearly returned to chaos.

Those were the days when the earth itself fornicated with the sky, when everything germinated and everything was fruitful. Not only every marriage but every union, every contact, every encounter, even fleeting, even between different species, even between beasts and stones, even between plants and stones, was fertile, and produced offspring not in a few months but in a few days. The sea of warm mud, which concealed the earth’s cold, prudish face, was one boundless nuptial bed, all its recesses boiling over with desire and teeming with jubilant germs.

This second creation was the true creation, because, according to what is passed down among the centaurs, there is no other way to explain certain similarities, certain convergences observed by all. Why is the dolphin similar to the fish, and yet gives birth and nurses its offspring? Because it’s the child of a tuna and a cow. Where do butterflies get their delicate colors and their ability to fly? They are the children of a flower and a fly. Tortoises are the children of a frog and a rock. Bats of an owl and a mouse. Conchs of a snail and a polished pebble. Hippopotami of a horse and a river. Vultures of a worm and an owl. And the big whales, the leviathans—how to explain their immense mass? Their wooden bones, their black and oily skin, and their fiery breath are living testimony to a venerable union in which—even when the end of all flesh had been decreed—that same primordial mud got greedy hold of the ark’s feminine keel, made of gopher wood and covered inside and out with shiny pitch.

Such was the origin of every form, whether living today or extinct...

— Primo Levi, ‘Quaestio De Centauris’, 2015


Luke Brennan is a visual artist whose work germinates within the constructs of painting. He uses organic materials and biomorphic forms to cause disruptions in the flat surface of the painted picture. Repeated cycles of creation and reduction erase any trace of the artist, and of process. The painting appears as if a relic, its definition loose and its origins undefined.  

Luke Brennan is a visual artist living and working in Sydney/Eora, Australia. He graduated from the Sydney College of the Arts with First Class Honours in 2017, and has exhibited in a number of group shows in Sydney and Melbourne. This is Luke’s second solo-exhibition in Canberra, and the inaugral exhibition of Al Fresco.